International Arrivals Now Need to Quarantine 7 Days Before RT-PCR Test

To guard vs. false results.
Photo/s: from Mayor Isko Moreno Twitter

Travelers who will arrive in the Philippines would have to wait until their seventh day of quarantine in government-approved facilities to get tested for the coronavirus instead of upon arrival, authorities said Friday.

This will guard against false positive and false negative results, Health Sec. Francisco Duque told radio DZBB. Those who test negative on the seventh day can return to their destination provinces by the tenth day to finish the 14-day quarantine, he said.

"Kaya ginawa natin na on the seventh day from date of arrival, 'yang panahon na 'yan malamang kung may infection, magiging positive ang RT-PCR test," he said.

The Department of Health recommended the seven-day quarantine before testing to the Inter-Agency Task Force against COVID-19, citing studies that showed an infected individual's viral road could be high up to the eighth day of infection.

Travelers from India, currently battling record COVID-19 surge, are still banned from entering the Philippines until May 14. Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Pakistan are also covered by the travel ban.

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